Well, it’s that time again! It’s almost January 1st, and you know what that means! It’s time for millions of people to do that cliche thing they call setting New Year’s Resolutions. The title of this post may be slightly misleading; I am not against the practice of setting yearly goals. The word “resolution” in this context is about as disturbing to me as the word “moist.” A shiver goes up my spine when I hear it or read it. It’s a loaded word, full of pressure and intentions that are often not completely realistic or manageable.
I’m not saying people shouldn’t set goals for themselves, and the turn of the year is as good of a time as any to start doing something–but the hype of it all is what irks me. All we hear on television are ads related to setting resolutions and trying to sell a product that will help a consumer achieve their chosen task for the year. Businesses take advantage of this need for people to start fresh. I look at it as a psychological sales tactic that prays on a person’s vulnerabilities.
Roughly 8% of resolution setters actually stick to their resolutions. That’s not a very high percentage, is it? I guess the other resolution setters just bought a bunch of stuff they didn’t need by watching those commercials. Yikes.
I know, we are only human and it can be really hard to keep working at a long term goal.
Like I said, I’m not telling anyone they shouldn’t aspire to do something to improve their life or make themselves happy. But I think as a society, in order to improve the success rate of this yearly fad, we need to approach and think of the resolution thing differently. We need to not just decide to do something; we need to have a better plan of attack.
First, let’s get rid of the word “resolution” altogether. Put it out of your mind. Throw it in the trash. Unless you are talking about screen resolution, this word no longer exists.
So, what word or words can you use instead?
Use whatever makes what you want to do sound less weighted down. You can call it something simple, like refer to it as this year’s goal, or you can choose to be more creative. Maybe you can give your desired task a title. If your goal is to live a healthier lifestyle, you could title it something like “My Yellow Brick Road to Personal Health.”
I admit that one might be cheesy, but I had to come up with something fast!
You want to feel inspired by what you’re doing and motivated to get to your end result. Does the word “resolution” do that for you?
Next, ask yourself if your aspiration is attainable. Does it fit in and work with your lifestyle? For instance, if you work two jobs seven days a week, reading three books a week may not be the most attainable goal. One book may be a better choice, or even backing it down a bit further to a couple of books per month. The important thing is you don’t want to push yourself so hard that you feel stressed out. Burnout will not help you achieve what you want to do.
Be realistic and honest with yourself about your abilities and schedule.
Last of all you will want to keep track of your progress on a regular basis. If your quest is to save more money, keep a spreadsheet of the amount of money you are saving weekly or monthly. You could even turn the data into a graph to create a more effective visual. Seeing your results unfold before you is a huge motivator. Lists are another great tool. Both are ways you can more easily monitor yourself and keep your momentum going.
You might have more than just one objective you intend to take on in the coming year. Try not to let yourself get overwhelmed by them in the coming weeks. When you are thinking about your objectives, take a few minutes for each one and write in a journal or document all the steps you need to take to make these things happen for you. Break them down into smaller bits. It will help to keep you moving forward. Nobody likes to be overwhelmed!
I have been contemplating the goals I want to set for myself for the upcoming year, but I haven’t quite planned everything out specifically. My one main objective is to grow my blog. I had a big setback the past couple of weeks with being sick and then it was Christmas. I am trying to get back into the swing of things, but it’s a bit slow going at the moment. Sometimes life happens, and there isn’t much we can do about it. All in all, I’m not too worried about getting the ball rolling again!
Otherwise, my buzzword of the upcoming year is “creativity.” I find myself thinking up more projects I want to try, and ideas I want to experiment with. I think 2015 will be an interesting year!
What do you aspire to do in 2015? I want to know! Share them in the comments below!
Happy New Year!